President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that he’ll do “whatever it takes” to win when asked if he would use his own money to fund his campaign this fall. This comes despite a combined $1.1 billion being raised between the Republican National Committee and Trump campaign this election cycle as of July 31.
The question on whether Trump would partially fund his own campaign came after a New York Times story released on Monday outlined the campaign’s bank account drying up in recent weeks. The report showed that despite a huge fundraising haul, the campaign has spent much of it going into the stretch run of the campaign.
“If we needed any more, I'd put it up personally, like I did in the primaries last time,” Trump said. “In the 2016 primaries, I put up a lot of money. If I have to, I'll do it here. But we don’t have to because we have double and maybe even triple what we had a number of years ago -- four years ago.”
In 2016, Trump spent $66 million, which paid for roughly 20% of his election bid.
But the Trump campaign was well-funded going into 2020 as the president took the unusual step of filing for re-election at the same time he was inaugurated.
But the once huge advantage Trump enjoyed in funding has been evaporating. Trump, in part, blamed COVID-19 and Democrats. Trump had the advantage of having a full war chest during the primary season as Biden’s campaign nearly went broke in the days leading up to his surprising come back in South Carolina and on Super Tuesday.
“We needed to spend more money up front because of the pandemic and the statements being made by Democrats, which were, again, disinformation,” Trump said.
The New York Times reported that the campaign was looking at scaling back its spending. The New York Times previously reported that the Trump campaign was scaling back its TV presence.
The move to curtail spending comes as there are still a number of states still in play for both candidates. While Trump has his eyes set at flipping Minnesota and Nevada from blue to red, Biden is going after a large number of states won by Trump in 2016, including Georgia, Arizona, North Carolina, Florida, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin. The more states in play, the more expensive the election becomes.